Monday, March 22, 2010

Research Report: Shyness and Technology Use in High School Students

This was a pretty interesting article about some research done in 2000 in Palo Alto, California. The purpose was to investigate the various uses of technology by high school students in order to see if their interaction with computers and phones facilitated or interfered with their social participation and social learning.

The moderately shy did not differ much from the non-shy students, however they were more apt to communicating their feelings and personal issues via email rather than the phone. The extremely shy students spent more time on the internet and emailed more and chose to deal with interpersonal conflict via letters, email, and telephone.

This is interesting because it can help to discover specific mechanisms by which people interact with technologies that tend to increase shyness and social inhibition, or ameliorate it. I also found some of the gender differences very interesting. Men were using technology more than women.

I started to read this article because I feel like I will tend to use my iPhone, surfing the web or playing games, more in social situations where I feel shy or uncomfortable. Or texting people in the same room at social gatherings.

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